UKARIA May E-Newsletter
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‘In essence then, if classic is what remains as a model and universal is what belongs to everyone for all time, Piazzolla’s tango is universal and classical music even if he called it “music of cafés”, a creation immortal and luminous nonetheless, like a star that has become substance in the sounds of the soul.’

- Horacio Ferrer
Last month, we introduced you to the work of Osvaldo Golijov, and this month you can read all about the life and work of Ástor Piazzolla (one of Golijov’s biggest influences). After a lifetime fraught with controversy, Piazzolla has emerged as one of the most influential contemporary composers of all time, his legacy now unquestioned within the canon of Western classical music. Elevating the tango from its humble origins into a form of high art entirely his own, he fused the improvisatory freedom of jazz with the baroque counterpoint of Bach and the harmonic language of Ravel, Stravinsky and Bartók. The result was Tango Nuevo – music ‘for the ears, not for dancing’.
Throughout our UKARIA 24 weekend, you’ll hear many of the composer’s most iconic works – including Oblivion, Libertango, the Aconcagua Concerto, and the Double Concerto for Bandoneón, Guitar and Strings - almost all of which are rarely performed live in Australia. You’ll hear James Crabb (classical accordion), Emma Pearson (soprano), Stefan Cassomenos (piano), Alice Giles (harp) and Momentum Ensemble perform these modern masterpieces in a weekend celebrating the Argentinean Tango Nuevo.
To learn more, click here to read our program notes.
Next month, we’ll introduce you to yet another fascinating piece you’ll hear at UKARIA 24: Sofia Gubaidulina’s Seven Words for classical accordion, cello and strings.
To download the full program, click here.



It took me a few days to accept that I had won a position in the [Berlin Philharmonic] Academy, I was so sure that someone had made a mistake! The orchestra has quite a unique vibe, it’s one of the best in the world, but it has the energy of a youth orchestra which is something so intoxicating in performance’
- Harry Bennetts
Violinist Harry Bennetts is a young musician we’ve followed closely over the years. The recipient of a Klein Family Foundation scholarship to study at the Australian National Academy of Music (ANAM), Harry appeared at the opening of the Cultural Centre in August 2015. His performance of Arvo Pärt’s Spiegel im Spiegel with harpist Marshall McGuire was a moment of unparalleled contemplative beauty, one that remains undiminished in our memories.
Following his studies at ANAM, Harry received the news in July last year that he would be the first musician from the institution to win a place at the prestigious Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra Academy. Under the mentorship of concertmaster Noah Bendix-Balgley, Harry is now around nine months into the two-year residency. We caught up with him to bring you this special interview, offering a fascinating insight into the inner workings of one of the world’s top orchestras.
Harry returns to Australia in July to perform at UKARIA Cultural Centre on Sunday 9 July with Melbourne based pianist Louisa Breen, a graduate of the Royal College of Music in London. Their program includes Beethoven’s Spring Sonata for Piano Violin in F major, Op.24, Chausson’s Poéme, Op. 25, Lutosławski’s Subito for Violin and Piano, and the Richard Strauss Sonata for Violin and Piano in E flat major, Op.18.


The past few months have been particularly eventful for our friends at the ASQ. In December last year, they concluded our 2016 series with guitarist Slava Grigoryan, with whom they spent several days recording Wolfgang Muthspiel’s Flexible Sky, Iain Grandage’s Black Dogs, and Ralph Towner’s Migration for Guitar and String Quartet at UKARIA Cultural Centre for a recording for ABC Classics. We’re pleased to announce that the recording has now been officially released, and can be purchased here. If you’d like to find out more about what the quartet have been up to, click here to read a great article in Limelight Magazine.
The Australian String Quartet perform four coffee concerts at UKARIA Cultural Centre this year. At the time of writing, there are only 8 tickets remaining for their first concert on Friday, 16 June. You can also hear them in August, November, and December.


‘Ole [Kristian Dahl] is single handedly the best bassoonist I’ve ever heard. I say that without even having to think about it. This place is extremely fortunate to see somebody like that.’

- Matthew Kneale, bassoon (Arcadia Winds)

Ole Kristian Dahl (bassoon) and Thorsten Johanns (clarinet) are both members of the internationally acclaimed Hindemith Quintet, and are recognized as some of the finest wind players in the world. The chance to witness musicians of this calibre working with one of Australia’s brightest new ensembles is a truly special opportunity. There are only 20 tickets left to this performance, so we encourage you to book soon.


We first discovered the Italian cellist Umberto Clerici (currently Principal Cello of the Sydney Symphony Orchestra) at our inaugural Ngeringa 24 weekend in April 2016, curated by Genevieve Lacey. We’re thrilled Umberto will be joining us for two concerts later this year – one with pianist Daniel de Borah (8 October) and another with the Streeton Trio (12 November). Not surprisingly, both concerts are sold out, but we are pleased to announce that Umberto will again be joining us in 2018, so watch this space.
If you’re yet to hear this incredible artist, you may be interested to know that he has recently recorded his debut album for ABC Classics – Suite Cubed: Bach and Beyond.
To purchase the CD or to find out more, click here.


Our next gardening morning will be held on Thursday, 22 June. We’d be delighted to have you with us.
To sign up, please visit UKARIA | Friends of the Garden
Please note, during the winter months, we may be required to reschedule our gardening mornings according to the weather. If this is the case, we will notify you by email.

For those of you who are joining us for Joe Chindamo and Zoë Black on Sunday, please come up from 1:00pm and warm yourself up with coffee, tea and cake in our heated alfresco. We look forward to sharing another inspiring concert with you.
Dylan Henderson
Communications Manager

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